Sunday, September 27, 2009

Games in Church?

Sacrament meeting is a hard time for wiggly bodies. Once upon a time, that wiggly body belonged to Sammy Jo, now it belongs to Charly (and Felix, but I digress.)

I started playing a simple little game with Sam a few years ago that distracts them and isn't way over their heads.

I hold aforementioned wiggly body and we say, "Jesus loves __________." And we fill in all the blanks, starting with immediate family, then extended family, then on to our friends.

It's great! They learn, and it's a great reminder for me too. It's also a good way for them to get familiar with the names of their uncles, aunts and cousins, since we've never lived close by.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Ponder and change

Sometimes I hear something that makes me think something that makes me think something else, that makes me realize I need to make some changes.

A few nights ago during scripture study I read this by James E. Talmage in response to "Let all men beware how they take my name in their lips":

"1. We may take the name of God in vain by profane speech.
2. We take it in vain when we swear falsely, not being true to our oaths and promises.
3. We take it in vain in a blasphemous sense when we presume to speak in that name without authority.
4. And we take his name in vain whenever we wilfully do aught that is in defiance of his commandments, since we have taken his name upon ourselves."
[emphasis added] (Quoted in Doctrine and Covenants Student Manual p135).

So any time we sin, we're profaning the name of God. Any time I raise my voice at my kids and/or am aggressive towards them in any way, that is a sin. Therefore, not only am I accountable for the sin itself, but also for profaning the name of my Heavenly Father.

Ummm....I better work on that.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Charts, I Say!

Now that Sam has started school, it seems that our lives are now ruled by dots, little squares, and pieces of tape.

Sam has a behavior chart at school, and boy is she into it! Every day each child gets a colored dot depending on how well they behaved: BLUE - outstanding, GREEN - good, YELLOW - warning, and the dreaded RED dot - unacceptable.

Sam got all blue dots in August and could tell you exactly how many she had. She has only gotten one green dot to date. The day of the green dot she said, "Mom, I got a green dot today...but that's okay. That's okay, Mom." Yeah, some days are green dot days. In fact, I'm having one myself.

If you get all blue dots one week, you are part of the "A Club" and get to visit the treasure box. Hooray! More small junky toys at our house!

Since this system is working so well for her at school, I decided to start some charts here at home. We have a responsibility chart and a chore chart. I don't worry about the behavior part. I'm more concerned about consistently teaching my children how to work; something I've neglected up 'til now. Not to mention the fact that I've been needing some help with the housework.

I was a little worried about starting the charts, since I have a tendency to balk at schedules and such, but it's working very well. Every day the girls complete all their *responsibilities, they get to put a marble in a jar. When the jar is full, we have our very own treasure box to visit! Even more dollar store toys to enjoy! It takes about two weeks of hard work to fill the jar and we just had our first treasure box visit. I'm excited that it's working so well. I'm also excited that the chores I picked for the girls are dependent on me doing my own chores as well, so it's helping keep me in line and the house clean.

I tried to pick chores that would be age appropriate for Sam and Charly, as well as something I wouldn't mind helping them do...(It's all about me, right?)

Monday: Make beds/put sheets back on (I wash towels and sheets on Mondays.)
Tuesday: Take out all trash
Wednesday: Mop bathroom floors (I supposedly clean the bathrooms on Wednesdays.)
Thursday: Gather laundry
Friday: Fold/put away laundry (Clothes laundry is done on Friday.)
Saturday: Vacuum bedroom and toy room (Jon helps them do this, as he's the better and more particular vacuumer at our house.)

The era of charts has long will it last, I wonder?

*For those of you who are curious, their daily responsibilites include: make bed, brush teeth, pick up toys, daily chore, clear dishes and get dressed. Again, I tried to pick things that wouldn't be overwhelming to me.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Daily Devotional

I realized after reading the Visiting Teaching message for August that something in my life was missing. And, in an attempt to organize my life a little more in the hopes of decreasing some stress, I decided to have daily devotional time.

Ever since getting married, my personal scripture study has crashed and burned, and burned some more. Reading with Jonny is going great. BUT, after reading this quote by Julie B. Beck, I decided some private time to commune with my Father and Savior was a necessity just to get through the day. I have already noticed the blessings coming from this.

"The Lord has told us that our time should ‘be devoted to the studying of the scriptures’ (D&C 26:1) and that ‘the Book of Mormon and the holy scriptures are given … for [our] instruction’ (D&C 33:16). Every woman can be a gospel doctrine instructor in her home, and every sister in the Church needs gospel knowledge as a leader and teacher. If you have not already developed the habit of daily scripture study, start now and keep studying in order to be prepared for your responsibilities in this life and in the eternities” (“My Soul Delighteth in the Scriptures,” Liahona and Ensign, May 2004, 107–8). [emphasis added].